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Tragedies that shook Kenya in 2022


Dec 23, 2022
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As curtains come down on the year 2022, Kenyans will live to remember major tragedies that hit the country hard, leading to loss of many lives.

We highlight some of the incidents that shook the country in 2022.

Nithi Bridge bus tragedy

The Modern Coast bus accident at Nithi bridge in Tharaka Nithi County on July 24 was one of the worst tragedies recorded in the country this year.

35 people were killed and a dozen others injured after the bus they were travelling in plunged into River Nithi along the Meru-Nairobi highway at around 6:40 pm.

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The Mombasa-bound bus fell off the bridge into the river about 40 metres below.

The Modern Coast bus which plunged 40 metres down the Nithi bridge in Tharaka Nithi County, killing 35 people on July 24, 2022. PHOTO/Courtesy

Eyewitnesses said the driver of the 45-capacity vehicle appeared to lose control as the speeding bus hurled down the steep slope on the notorious blackspot.

The bus then veered off the road, hit the guard rails and rolled several times down the rocky valley before hitting the river bank with a thud.

Casualties were rushed to Chogoria Mission and Chuka Referral hospitals for treatment but unfortunately, some of them didn’t come out alive.

Among those whose lives were cut short was a 29-year-old medical doctor, Dr. Mary Mwandisha who had just landed a job with the Taita Taveta County government and was on her way to collect her appointment letter when she was involved in the accident.

The distressed family of the promising doctor said she was working at Life Care hospital in Meru on a contract basis and hoped to change the family’s fortunes with the new permanent job.

She was expected to start her new job on August 1, 2022, but the accident shut her dreams and the hopes of her family. Forever.

Dr Mary Mwandisha who perished in a road accident at Nithi Bridge on Sunday, July 23, 2022. PHOTO/Courtesy

The accident happened at the height of the general election campaigns with some leaders calling for speedy action to avert loss of more lives.

Speaking at various centres in Meru, then-Azimio la Umoja presidential candidate Raila Odinga promised to re-construct the killer Nithi Bridge if elected president.

Raila, who asked the gathering to observe a minute of silence in memory of the victims of the tragedy, said there was a need to redesign the bridge.

It remains to be seen if the former Prime Minister will push the new government to reconstruct the bridge after he missed the country’s top seat in the August 9 general election.

Homa Bay road crash

10 people died on September 26 after a matatu they were travelling in collided head-on with an oncoming fuel tanker at Ngegu Shopping centre along Homa Bay-Kendu Bay Road.

Police said eight people died on the spot while two others lost their lives while undergoing treatment at Homa Bay County Teaching and Referral Hospital.

A class Seven pupil at Janeiro Junior Academy within Homa Bay and a Form Three student at Kobala Mixed Secondary School were among those who were killed in the accident.

Homa Bay County Police Commander Samson Ole Kinne attributed the accident to speeding and careless overtaking by the matatu driver who was trying to overtake another vehicle at a sharp corner.

Collapsed buildings in Kasarani, Ruaka

Five people died in separate tragedies after two buildings collapsed in Kasarani and Ruaka within a week in November.

Three people, including a vendor, died after a seven-storey building under construction collapsed in Kasarani, Nairobi, on November 15.

Collapsed building in Kasarani

Kenya Red Cross officials said six other people were rescued after being trapped in the rubble for hours.

Three days later, two people died while two others escaped unhurt after another building which was under construction collapsed in Ruaka, Kiambu.

The six-storey building under construction collapsed at Joyland area killing on the spot a husband and wife who were sleeping in their home, adjacent to the building when they were trapped in the rubble.

The collapsed Ruaka building. PHOTO/File

The two deceased were named Peter Njuthi and his wife Faith Wambui aged 73 and 50 years respectively while their son and his friend, were injured and rushed to hospital. The two survived.

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Following the incidents, Nairobi Governor Johnson Sakaja said he had interdicted three employees over negligence.

The affected employees were relieved of their duties pending further investigations into the tragedy.

Preliminary investigations showed the Kasarani building had no statutory approvals from Nairobi City
County nor from National Construction Authority (NCA).

The developer had in the past ignored noncompliance notices with the latest being issued on the morning of the incident, Tuesday, November 15.

11 Killed in Turkana attack

11 people, including eight police officers and a local chief, were on November 24 killed by cattle rustlers in Turkana East.

The officers were in pursuit of Pokot bandits who had raided a village in Turkana East and made away with livestock.

Following the incident, President William Ruto ordered security agencies to deal “firmly, decisively and conclusively” with the perpetrators.

“After receiving a comprehensive report on the Turkana/Pokot incident that led to 10 security/administration officers losing their lives, I have instructed security agencies to deal firmly, decisively and conclusively with those involved. Cattle rustling will stop na sio tafadhali,” Ruto said in a tweet.

After receiving a comprehensive report on the Turkana/pokot incident that led to 10 security/administration officers losing their lives,I have instructed security agencies to deal firmly,decisively and conclusively with those involved. Cattle rustling will stop na sio tafadhali.

— William Samoei Ruto, PhD (@WilliamsRuto) September 25, 2022

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